- Pick the Correct Brush
Selecting a toothbrush from the vast selection offered at your local supermarket can be an overwhelming task. How do you if the one you picked is the correct one to use? Is it too big? Too small? Too hard? Too soft? There are so many questions, and it’s not like there’s a guide available in the market. So here are a few pointers that should help you choose the correct brush whether it’s a power brush or manual brush. Remember the important part about a toothbrush is that it helps remove the bacteria and loosen plaque from the teeth and gums.
- Choose a brush that can reach every part of your mouth.
- Choose a brush that has a small enough head to fit your mouth. (Big head brushes may not allow you to reach every part of the mouth.)
- Choose a brush that has bristles that are soft enough to bend under the gum. (Hard bristles may cut your gums, which is not good.)
- Look for the American Dental Association seal of approval on your new brush.
- Don’t Brush Hard
Sometimes, people tend to scrub their teeth rather than massage them. Brushing your teeth too hard can have a negative effect of the gums, causing them to bleed and become irritated. Plaque that builds up on the teeth and gums is actually very soft and loose, so a person doesn’t need to brush very hard to remove it from those areas. If you are scrubbing for a brighter smile, you want to switch toothpastes to one that focuses on teeth whitening.
- Don’t Rush the Process
Brushing your teeth doesn’t take very long. Still, there’s no need to rush it. The art of brushing teeth should take place twice a day and for at least two minutes each time. It is best not to cut your brushing time short for any reason. Some like to time themselves with a two-minute timer or even by listening to a song that is approximately 2-3 minutes long. This is also a great way to get the moving first thing in the morning.
- Replace the Old Toothbrush
Most people don’t like buying new toothbrushes because they are comfortable with the one they have. However, when the bristles begin to fade or wear down, it is best to throw that old toothbrush away get a new one. Old toothbrushes can be less effective when removing plaque from teeth and gums and they do not get between the tooth and gums very well. The best practice is to replace your toothbrush every 3-4 months and keep it in an open environment to avoid a buildup of mold and bacteria, which grows your toothbrush is kept enclosed and wet. Also, don’t share your toothbrush to avoid any mouth disease that another person may have.
- Massage Not Scrub
While brushing, many people tend to brush left to right in more of a scrubbing motion rather and a circular massaging motion. This is a very common mistake that people often make when brushing their teeth with a manual toothbrush. As you begin massaging your teeth and gums, begin at the gum line and move the brush in small circular motions up and down. This will help you to cover the entire tooth and allow the bristles reach between the gum and tooth for a thorough cleaning.
- Brush the Gums and Tongue
When it comes to brushing the gums, many people forget that the gums are a place in the mouth where bacteria can also build. Specifically, where the gums meet the tooth is where most of the bacterial build up may occur. Most people tend to miss that area when they are brushing. However, this is a very important place to target bacteria. Getting 2-3 millimeters under the gum line can really help avoid the buildup of plaque and bacteria. One great way to get between the tooth and gums is to position the toothbrush against the gum line at a 45-degree angle. The tongue is just as important as brushing the gums because a lot of bacteria can build on the tongue and cause bad breath. The top of the mouth (hard and soft palates) and tongue-side of the teeth are also a place that need to be brushed.
To learn more about brushing techniques or safe brushing practices, call Foothill Dental Care in Livermore at (925) 961-5484 to schedule an appointment today.